Adding brushes to GIMP is as simple as finding the brushes you want online, and dragging them into the GIMP brushes folder.

Well, there are technically a few other steps in there – but that’s essentially it! I’ll show you how easy it is to install brushes in GIMP – which you can then use in our awesome tutorial on how to create a powder blast effect. You can watch the video below (created in May 2020), or scroll below the video to read the article (available in 30+ languages).

Step 1: Find a Brush Pack and Download It

To start, find a brush pack like this Powder Explosion pack I used in my Powder Blast Effect tutorial and download it to your computer.

Once the file has finished downloading, locate the file on your computer and extract all of the files contained in the zip folder (right click on the file and go to Extract All).

Step 2: Locate the Brushes Folder in GIMP and Drag Brush Kit Into This Folder

Move Brush Kit Into GIMP Brushes Folder

Next, you’ll want to navigate to your brushes folder in GIMP so that you can drag your new brush kit into this folder. Your GIMP brushes folder is usually in the C: drive>Program Files>GIMP(whatever version you are using, in my case 2.9).share>2.0>brushes.  Click an drag your extracted brush kit (shown in the photo above to the left, with the file name “PowderExplosionKIT”) into this brushes folder (shown on the right in the photo above). Your new brushes will now be installed in GIMP.

Step 3: Refresh Your Brushes in GIMP

Open up GIMP and navigate to the Brushes tab in your Layers panel on the right side of your GIMP interface. If you do not see a Layers panel, go to Windows>Recently Closed Docs>Layers, Channels, Paths, Undo… to reopen this panel. The Brushes tab is usually located in the bottom half of this panel.

Refresh Brushes in GIMP

Once you locate the Brushes tab, click the “Refresh brushes” icon in the bottom right corner of the tab (shown in the picture above denoted by the red arrow). This will refresh your set of brushes and will now include the new brushes you just installed. When you click on a brush, you can see that the new brush we installed contains the name of the ABR brush file (in this case, it says “PowderExplosionKit.abr-010, denoted by the purple arrow).

Step 4: Enjoy!

That’s it! You now have new brushes in GIMP.

Thanks for reading this tutorial! If you enjoyed, please visit our GIMP Tutorials page on our website for more text and video tutorials, or visit our GIMP Tutorial YouTube channel.

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